KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s industrial production index (IPI) surged 9.3% in March from a year ago, exceeding a Bloomberg survey of an 8.7%, as the growth was powered by the manufacturing and electricity segments. This was the strongest growth since July 2013.
Chief Statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said on Thursday the growth of IPI in March 2021 was driven by the manufacturing index which expanded by 12.7 and electricity index which increased by 10.3%. However, he said the mining index dropped by 1.9%.
He said manufacturing output continued to expand in March after recording a growth of 4.5% in February 2021.
The major sub-sectors contributing to the growth in manufacturing sector in March 2021 were transport equipment & other manufactures (20.9%); petroleum, chemical, rubber & plastic products (14.1%) and electrical & electronics products (13.8%).
Mohd Uzir said the export-oriented industries underpinned the growth of the manufacturing sector by 12.4% while domestic-oriented industries increased by 13.4%.
“The growth of the manufacturing sector was also driven by the high capacity utilisation rate especially in electrical & electronic products and petroleum, chemical, rubber & plastic products sub-sectors.
“In addition, the performance of the manufacturing sector also in line with the notable growth in exports and IPI for some of main trading partners of Malaysia, ” he added.
As for the mining sector output dropped 1.9% in March 2021 as compared to the same period of the previous year.
The deterioration was due to the decrease in crude oil & condensate index (-9.4%). The natural gas index grew positively 4.3%.
However, the electricity sector output expanded by 10.3% in March 2021 from a year ago.
For the first quarter, the IPI increased by 3.9% from a year ago.
The growth was due to the 6.8% expansion in manufacturing index. The mining and electricity sectors recorded a deterioration of 4.1% and 0.1% respectively.